Skip to Content

What to Serve with Tonkatsu? 7 BEST Side Dishes

5 from 1 vote Only logged in users can rate recipes

Tonkatsu is a popular Japanese dish made of pork cutlet, breaded and deep-fried in oil.

This pork cutlet tastes divine, and if you have this dish in a Japanese restaurant, it’s often served with sauce or shredded cabbage.

Although this dish tastes delicious, it does have a high intake of fats and oils.

So, to even out the nutrients, a suitable and healthy side dish is necessary.

So, now the question is what to serve with tonkatsu? Fortunately, there are ample options to choose side dishes for this main dish.

However, you must pick the one compatible with the main dish.

Let’s dive further into the article to know more.

Why Consider Serving Side Dishes with Tonkatsu?

why consider serving side dishes with tonkatsu

As much as you enjoy tonkatsu, it’s a greasy food since it’s deep-fried in the oil.

We can’t deny that it tastes incredible and keep craving for more, but it’s a bit unhealthy to have this dish alone.

Hence, you’ll see in Japanese restaurants that it’s mostly served with shredded cabbage.

This raw vegetable helps digestion, showing the significance of a side dish.

A side dish helps to even out the nutrients and help balance the meal.

So, picking a dish to have with the main dish isn’t an easy task.

However, understanding the aspects of the main dish will help you figure out what type of dish to serve with tonkatsu or any main dish.

What to Serve with Tonkatsu? 7 BEST Side Dishes

Here is a list of the seven best side dishes to serve with tonkatsu:

1. Shredded Raw Cabbage

shredded raw cabbage

Tonkatsu served with shredded cabbage is a match made in heaven as it tastes divine.

You don’t need any ingredients to make this side item as all you need is a fresh cabbage and shred it.

This Japanese pork cutlet tastes fantastic by itself, but with shredded cabbage as a side dish, balance out the meal.

If you have eaten tonkatsu before, you will know that shredded cabbage is often served with this dish.

2. Miso Soup

miso soup

Miso soup is one of the common dishes relished by Japanese people and is often served with tonkatsu.

This soup has also become quite popular globally because of its enriching taste.

It’s a healthy, light soup made of fermented soya bean, called miso paste and dashi stock.

This soup tastes better when served hot and would be perfect on a winter evening.

Miso soup makes an excellent accompaniment with tonkatsu, and it’d be a massive loss if you don’t give this combo a chance.

3. Steamed Broccoli

steamed broccoli

Tonkatsu is a deep-fried pork cutlet, so it has a high intake of fats and oils.

Therefore, adding a vegetable-based side dish would be excellent to even out the meal.

We recommend steamed broccoli as it is pretty simple to prepare and is highly nutritious.

Broccoli is a rich source of fiber and other micronutrients, including vitamin C.

If you’re on a balanced diet, this combo would be good.

Additionally, if you prefer a light meal, this pair would suffice.

4. Steamed Rice

steamed rice

When it comes to tonkatsu, you don’t have to prepare fancy side dishes, and that’s one of the good aspects of this dish.

Tonkatsu is already rich in flavor, so you don’t have to prepare a strong flavored side dish.

Hence, we recommend steamed rice to go with this pork cutlet, and believe us, they taste incredible.

Steamed rice has a bland taste, but it helps to bring a subtlety to the meal overall.

Thus, making it a suitable side item to serve with tonkatsu.

Moreover, steamed rice is easy to prepare as all you have to do is cook it in a pressure cooker or a pot.

5. Tonkatsu Sauce

tonkatsu sauce

Tonkatsu is often served with tonkatsu sauce as it blends perfectly with the dish.

And it won’t be fair not to include it in the list.

This sauce is made of brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, and Japanese sweet wine resulting in a dark brown sauce.

Tonkatsu sauce is rich in flavor, and you can have this with both vegetable and meat-based dishes.

Simply drizzle the sauce over the top of the pork cutlet and savor it.

If you want to make homemade tonkatsu sauce, try this easy recipe.

6. Kohlrabi Salad

kohlrabi salad

Kohlrabi is rich in nutrients and makes an excellent accompaniment to serve with tonkatsu.

This vegetable is tangy, a bit sweet, crunchy and zesty, making it a perfect item to pair with a protein-rich pork cutlet.

Kohlrabi salad is a simple dish, and it will take only five minutes to prepare it.

Just chop the vegetable and mix it with vinaigrette.

This vegetable is available during the winter and fall season.

Perhaps you can grab this opportunity to prepare the salad and have it with tonkatsu during this season.

7. Tsukemono


Tsukemono, also known as Japanese pickle, is made of vegetables and some fruits.

These vegetables or fruits are seasoned with salt, vinegar, or sugar.

This pickle is often served with meals and blends with most dishes, making it a versatile pickle.

You can choose any tsukemono to go with your meal.

This Japanese pickle has a salty texture; however, it complements perfectly with tonkatsu.

Take a chance with this combo and be blown away by how incredible they taste.


Tonkatsu is a popular Japanese dish relished by people worldwide.

This pork cutlet tastes fantastic by itself but adding a side dish will be divine.

Additionally, serving it with a suitable side dish is vital for this main dish because of its high intake of oils, which is quite unhealthy.

Hence, it would help to opt for a nutrient-rich side item while having tonkatsu.

It will enhance the taste and allow you to have a healthy meal.

And to make your task easier, we have listed the seven best side dishes that complement this pork cutlet.

So, if you’re confused and unable to sort the side dishes to serve with tonkatsu, you can check the list above.

What to Serve with Tonkatsu? 7 BEST Side Dishes

Recipe by Andrew Gray Course: Side Dishes


Prep time


Cooking time


Total time




  • Shredded Raw Cabbage

  • Miso Soup

  • Steamed Broccoli

  • Steamed Rice

  • Tonkatsu Sauce

  • Kohlrabi Salad

  • Tsukemono


  • Pick your favorite recipe from the article.
  • Organize your ingredients and utensils.
  • Follow the detailed instructions in the recipe to make your side dish.
  • Prepare and serve for delicious meal!

Recipe Video

About The Author

What to Serve with Creamy Polenta? 10 BEST Side Dishes